The last time Joh’Vonna Darrington caught a pass from North Texas guard Hannah Christian, it didn’t turn out well for the Weatherford College standout.
The Lady Coyotes were in the midst of a win over South Plains in the first round of the Region V tournament at the end of the 2011-12 season, when Christian tossed the ball to Darrington, who crumpled to the floor with torn anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments in her knee, ending her freshman season.
The pair of former junior college teammates will get another crack at it in the fall after Darrington signed with UNT on Wednesday, the first day of the late signing period.
Darrington, a 6-foot forward, averaged 13.4 points and 8.4 rebounds a game and earned second-team All-North Texas Junior College Athletics Conference honors as a sophomore last season for Weatherford after quickly recovering from the injury.
“She is versatile, very athletic and has a good skill set,” UNT head coach Mike Petersen said. “She gives you great flexibility and is one of those players who is a hard matchup for the other team. She can play in the post and perimeter and can really guard. Is she a four, a three a two? It doesn’t matter. She is a really good player.”
Darrington was averaging nearly 20 points a game as a freshman before she suffered the injury in March of that season. She was back on the court in October and quickly proved to UNT’s coaches that she is well on her way back to being the player she was before the injury.
Darrington helped lead her team to the NJCAA national tournament last season, when she scored 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds in a first-round win over Northeast Community College. She came back to grab 13 rebounds in a second-round loss to Trinity Valley.
Weatherford was ranked No. 16 in the final NJCAA regular season poll and finished 25-6 on the season
Petersen said Darrington’s knee is no longer a concern, especially not after the way she performed in her sophomore season.
Darrington joins Candice Adams, a point guard from Cedar Hill, and Terra Ellison, a wing from The Colony, in UNT’s recruiting class. Adams, who ESPN has ranked among the top 100 prospects in the class of 2013, and Ellison both signed with UNT during the early signing period.
Petersen believes Darrington will fit well, both as a player and a person.
“She had a lot of options,” Petersen said. “She came on a visit and felt really comfortable with the staff and the team. Having Hannah here helped.”
BRETT VITO can be reached at 940-566-6870 or via Twitter at @brettvito.